30 July 2009

2003 State Wrestling T-shirt

current mood: sleepy

i'm not afraid things won't get better
but it feels like this has gone on forever
you have to cry with your own blue tears
have to laugh with your own good cheer
~ “Good Intentions” by Toad the Wet Sprocket

Preface: I am not a thief. I am more of a collector.

Last Friday, I went to the Toad the Wet Sprocket concert at Stir. I was front and center for Glen and the boys. ‘Veggie Girl’ was there too. As we were listening to one of our favorite bands, several things were rushing through my mind. The first thought was that when I started listening to Toad, NBF was 4 years old. Ha ha ha. I have been a fan of a band for 20 years. Unbelievable.

I became rather nostalgic as the show went on. I found myself thinking back to middle school and high school when wearing flannel shirts and jeans were the norm. Dear Lord, am I dating myself or what?!? As always happens when I think of flannel shirts, I couldn’t help but picture my very own ‘Skater Boi’ from high school. He was unbelievably good looking with black hair and a gorgeous face. He had a green and black plain skater flannel that he always wore when he went skateboarding. He let me borrow it one night when I was cold and he was being a gentleman. I loved that flannel. Still do, in fact, since I never gave it back. We broke up on a cold January day. He accused me of cheating on him with the only guy that I would have actually cheated on him with – but I hadn’t done so, and told him so. He apologized for not trusting me. I apologized for having to break up with him anyway. That night, I wrapped myself up in his flannel and cried myself to sleep. Since then, that flannel has comforted me through many a break up.

That flannel was the first of many ‘kept shirts’ throughout the years. I have lots of them. Each has special meaning and brings a smile to my face. My intentions are good ones – as I always meant to return them – it just never seemed to happen. They are not ‘trophies’ to indicate how many hearts I have broken – nor are they pathetic attempts at holding onto what I can from lost relationships. The shirts are tangible memories. When I see them, I am reminded of whom I once was and the journeys on which I have been.

The habit has rubbed off on my little sis who also has quite the collection of ‘old boyfriend’ clothing. Currently, in my possession, are three shirts belonging to NBF. As he reads this, I imagine he is trying to figure out how he will reacquire them. If it is any comfort, I have every intention of returning them.


PERSONAL NOTE: Have fun at your bachelorette party tomorrow night!

If you haven’t already, please donate $5.00 to the Breast Cancer 3-Day! http://www.the3day.org/goto/jtuck

23 July 2009

Red Phone Boxes and Yellow Palaces

current mood: deflated

And no matter how hard I try
I can’t escape these things inside
I know, I know
But all the pieces fall apart
You will be the only one who knows, who knows
~ “Let Me Go” by Three Doors Down

I love postcards. On my desk, I have a tasteful display of postcards from all over the world. I rearrange them every few weeks. I take some down and put new ones up. When things get especially stressful at work, I take a moment and stare at one of the postcards, trying to visualize myself there, touring Versailles, or looking over the Cliffs of Moher. I liken this exercise to jumping into chalk pictures like Mary Poppins did with Jane and Michael. It’s a method of escaping from the real world.

Also on my desk are photographs of the twins; a few friends; non-boyfriend; and Elizabeth. I even have a photograph of me with the Geico Gecko. Without these personal items, I don’t know how I would make it through the work day. I spend, on average, 50 hours a week at my desk. That is more time than I spend sleeping each week. I had to personalize my workspace – or possibly go mad.

Recently I applied for a promotion in a different department. I have experience and am more than qualified for the position. I sent in two letters of recommendation, as well as a picture-perfect resume. I was informed today that the position has been filled. I didn’t even get a bloody interview. At the moment, my ego is too deflated to even ask the recruiter why a position is open for 3 months and within a week of me applying; it has been filled, with no interview. Maybe I am suffering from DOG -- delusions of grandeur. According to wisegeek.com:
In clinical terms, delusions of grandeur are real delusional symptoms, which are irrational and inappropriate beliefs. Often found in patients with varying degrees of either dementia, psychotic or depressive disorders, they firmly possess unrealistic beliefs that may eventually harm them physically, mentally, or emotionally.

Based on this assessment, I would like to believe that I exaggerated greatly when I suggested that DOG is an appropriate assessment of my situation. I am seldom irrational – though often inappropriate. Plus, when I told several friends my situation, here were their responses:

1. I’m Sorry
2. That sucks, I’m sorry
3. That fucking blows
4. I’m sorry, love. Been there. Done that. People are dumb.
5. WHAT?!? That means one of 2 things. Something else is opening up that you will be better at or 2, they think you’re too good at your job.
6. I’m sorry. I hope something better opens up for you soon.
7. Well at least you know something. I applied for the same job and they won’t even talk to me to tell me no.

I must admit that 3, 4, and 7, made me laugh aloud. I may not be getting a promotion with more money, better hours, and a closer location – but, I have really supportive friends – all of whom would let me move in with them – if I were not already in the pathetic situation of living with my parents. Thankfully, my sister is in the same boat as me . . . and she GOT THE PROMOTION she applied for. Tell me again, when is this recession going to end? And why didn’t Prince Harry win the election?

Speaking of elected officials – can anyone explain why our fist-bumping leader is trying to push a health care plan that worsens the level of care for a majority of Americans? The idea is to IMPROVE the situation – not make me stand in line for a band-aid when my arm has been severed. What the world needs now is a good lobbyist . . . and I happen to know a very handsome man who is well on his way to becoming one. Good thing he will take all that blood money – someone will need to pay for my book and office supply habits when I am out of a job and living in a cardboard box with Elizabeth and Gracie.

You know if I had Derren Brown’s powers, I wouldn’t need a promotion. I would be ruling the world. ‘Who is Derren Brown?’ you ask. Google him. He is magically delicious! And how do I know who Derren Brown is? It’s because of NBF. One of the reasons I love hanging out with NBF is that he has a downloaded collection of viewing entertainment which puts my DVD library to shame. We aren’t talking about “Ernest Goes to Camp” and YouTube’s latest Top Ten videos. The other night, for example, we watched ANOTHER Derren Brown special; which was phenom, as expected. After I was wowed and astounded by Mr. Brown’s ‘MESSIAH’, NBF had me watch the pilot episode of ‘Entourage’.

Bloody Hell! All I need is another series to watch. Luckily, he has every episode downloaded, so I can catch up on 6 seasons at my leisure. Granted, I am only two episodes into the ‘Entourage’ franchise; but thus far, I am intrigued and suitably entertained. Now if I could just get promoted.

Next time.

PERSONAL NOTE: When at first you don’t succeed, stab him in the face again.

CONFIDENTIAL NOTE: I wish you were here.

20 July 2009

Pirates of Pens and Notepads

current mood: missing my bed

If you just realize what I just realized
Then we'd be perfect for each other
and we'd never find another
Just realize what I just realized
We'd never have to wonder
If we missed out on each other, now
~ “Realize” by Colbie Caillat

This weekend turned into a treasure hunt for amazing office supplies at Office Depot. You see, Mi Madre had to purchase a couple of items and I couldn’t turn down the opportunity to go shopping at an office supply store. Unfortunately for her, the file folders she wanted were not available. Luckily for me, there was a conveniently located CLEARANCE station in the store with buckets filled with items under $2.00. Wait until you hear what exciting items I purchased:
Brightly colored staples (Red, Blue, and Green)
An assortment of Paper House Productions die cut magnets
Donut shaped tape dispenser
A package of 3 correction fluid pens
Brightly colored striped design thumbtacks
Sortable Index card Post-Its (SUPER STICKY)
Scotch Pop-Up Tape Deskgrip Dispenser
Pop-up Tape Dispenser REFILLS
Cherry Chapstick

There were lots more items; but I reined myself in for under $30.00. Leaving Office Depot with less than 30 dollars worth of products is a rare accomplishment for me. Then to make matters better, when I arrived at work this morning, a special fairy had left pretty new file folders, a sticky notepad, and a new pen on my desk. I knew who the fairy was and thanked her profusely for her kind surprise. My addiction to office supplies is well-known throughout the office. It is also general knowledge that if someone had need for a last minute greeting card; the box on my desk will have ‘just the right card’ to indicate a personal touch. I also have at least 5 different designs of stationary and note cards, in case written correspondence is necessary. I don’t have nearly the time I used to have to send out letters – but I still try to send a couple each week.

If you want to receive some personal mail that doesn’t involve bills or marketing ads – let me know. Perhaps your mailbox will get a special treat in the upcoming weeks.

PERSONAL NOTE: I love the new place! You are amazing!

CONFIDENTIAL NOTE: You said we’d always be friends. Pie-crust promise, I suppose.

15 July 2009

A little insight

current mood: grateful

Well, your CD collection looks shiny and costly
How much did you pay for your bad Moto Guzzi?
And how much did you spend on your black leather jacket?
Is it you or your parents in this income tax bracket?
~ “Rock N Roll Lifestyle” by Cake

I have no birth children. I have spent a lot of money and a lot of time attempting to remedy the situation. There has been no success. The stress of fertility treatments can destroy a person. It can destroy a marriage without batting an eye. I will categorically say that infertility is a serial killer. It bashes one woman’s hopes, and then laughs as another woman gets ‘accidentally’ pregnant and cries herself to sleep because she knows she’ll never be able to raise the baby alone. For years, I cringed when another friend would announce that she was pregnant. I wanted so desperately to be happy for her (and I was); but at the same time, I was heartbroken that God would give her a baby and not me.

Then one day, a friend shared with me the news that a mutual a co-worker was pregnant. She explained that she wanted to co-host a baby shower for the girl. I had worked with mama-to-be for a while; however, we were not close. Still, I liked her and knew that most of her family lived out-of-town, so she would probably appreciate the sentiment. I had no idea what co-hosting this shower would mean, to me or to her.

I try not to do anything, half-ass, so I jumped headfirst into the planning of a baby shower. I created planning spreadsheets, went shopping all over the city looking for baby shower themed invitations; decorations; games, etc. We did menu planning and pre-addressed ‘thank you’ notes to help the mother-to-be. While I planned, my husband and I were actively undergoing fertility treatments. I was in and out of the fertility clinic at least twice a week. I was taking medication which made me a hormonal crazy person. I would alternate between hot flashes, laughing fits, and unprovoked weeping. As I planned this shower, I fantasized about my own baby shower – and I put as much heart and love into this one as I prayed someone would put into mine when the miracle happened. When the Big Day came, the shower was a success.

The weeks of planning had also given me a chance to get to know the expecting mother. And I suppose, in a way, I was living vicariously through her pregnancy. Every new experience she had, whether it was a baby kick, a sonogram, or even back pains, she shared with me, and I truly felt excited for her. Eventually we became close enough that she shared with me her own private struggle with infertility. I reciprocated. From that day forward, I began to heal. It didn’t mean I didn’t still want a baby with every fibre of my being – because I certainly did. I can only explain it as a transformation of sorts. I no longer cried when I saw pregnant women. I could look at babies again without feeling sick to my stomach. AND I found a new perspective on my own life. I realized that the birth mother of my step-children has actually given me what I had been longing for – motherhood. I had already loved my stepchildren as my own – but it took my new friendship with an expectant mother to realize the selflessness involved in allowing a ‘childless step mom’ be a ‘Mom’.

Months went by, and eventually a beautiful baby girl was born to my friend. I had the honor of giving her the first Mother’s Day card she ever received. I was dubbed as ‘Aunt Jillian’. Every time that little girl did something new, her mom and my good friend, shared it with me. She asked for my advice on child-rearing and offered me her own on living with infertility. She and her husband were my surrogate family as I went through other personal issues, eventually a divorce, and a cross-country move. They had another baby; this time, a boy.

I also grew closer to the birth mother of my step-children. She and her husband are two of my dearest friends. And, luckily for me, she still encourages her kids to be my kids as well. I still long for a baby sometimes . . . but it’s not an emptiness inside me, like it once was. That black hole has been filled with the love of a family I have chosen (and has chosen me).
This was not supposed to be a serious and cathartic blog posting. It was actually inspired by a very amusing comment which stemmed from me being excited that I am to be the benefactor of my “niece’s” first twin bed; one that will make her feel like even more of a princess than she already does. In fact, at the age of 3, she believes that she and her mom are “Top Models”. This was the instant message which sparked it all. . .
yeah, I really should prob watch what I watch and listen to around them now b/c she's just so dang smart and has such a good memory but I love having a little mini- me.

I may not have my own ‘mini-me’; but I have friends who are willing to share theirs.

Thank you.


14 July 2009

misery loves company

current mood: quiescent

My friend is trapped in a shame spiral
I'm worried about my friend's survival
Waiting around on the sea to collapse
Sticking his foot in his own traps
~ “Point Shirley” by Rhett Miller

Who believes the bullshit line that ‘misery loves company’? I don’t know anyone who desires the presence of others when they are miserable. Truly, when a person is wallowing in one’s own self-pity, the pleasure derived from another person’s company is lost in the flood of melancholy. This is why in the movies; depressed characters are surrounded by empty food containers, dirty dishes, and an unpleasant aroma which inhibits up-close communication with another person. This also explains why happy people are the last creatures in the world that a miserable person wants to encounter.

On the other hand, bitterness does, indeed, love company. Bitter people are only able to sustain their bitterness through human interaction. Admit it; right now you have an image of someone in your head who fits this description. They believe in entitlement; well, at least their own entitlement. The only joy they get is by seeing someone else’s misery. These people suck.


I couldn’t even think of a segue to go from bitter people sucking to my latest accomplishment. The other day, I wrapped and tagged a majority of my Christmas presents. Yes, I realize that it is only July. But, I have found that my holidays are a lot more special when I am not overwhelmed with stress. I enjoy buying gifts for people; but I would rather do so when the rest of the world is not hustling and bustling (shoving and pushing) through the retail world alongside me. There I was wrapping presents in the formal living room when Mi Madre walks in and sits on the loveseat, just watching me. I acknowledged her presence and explained that I was wrapping Christmas presents.

Her facial expression was transformed from curiosity to concern.
‘Honey, is everything alright?’
‘Yeah. I just want to get this taken care of.’
‘Are you dying of some disease and just don’t want anyone to worry?’
‘Um . . . no. Just trying to reduce my holiday stress.’
‘’Are you sure you aren’t wrapping them all now because you don’t plan on being around at Christmas?’
‘Yes, I am sure I am not hiding a terminal illness. I intend on being here for Christmas.’
Then she gave me the stare that mothers give when they are trying to seek out a lie or get some sort of confession from their children.
‘Seriously, Mom, I am fine’

My mother is a constant worrier. If we aren’t in her presence, and she cannot get a hold of one of us, she is sure we are ‘dead in a ditch or worse’. I never know what ‘or worse’ entails and I don’t ask. I understand that mothers worry – but mine does so on overdrive. Love comes in all forms – I suppose.

Peace! Love! & Rock-n-Roll!

PERSONAL NOTE: I wish I were in NYC with you.

Maybe in the next lifetime, timing will be right.

10 July 2009

Sleeping All Day Staying Up All Night

current mood: restless

some chasing their own tails
some chase till all else fails
some chasing common sense
some chasing a picket fence
me, i'd rather chase you down
~ “Chasing Ambulances” by Octoberman

Last night, I decided to FINALLY submit all of my Disney Movie Reward codes into the system. I have been a member of the Disney Movie Club for almost 2 years – and that equals out to a LOT of Disney Movie codes. I went through each DVD case, found the codes, and entered them online. Lucky for me, I earned enough to acquire a new 2GB flash drive – in the shape of Wall-E’s eyes. How cute is that???? I have needed a new Flash Drive since the ill-fated “dog walking in the corn field and lost my keys (including my 16GB flash drive)” expedition. Granted, my new flash drive is only 2GB – but since I have an external hard drive now I don’t need to store as much ON my flash drive. Yay me!

This weekend, I get to finish tiling my bedroom and TV room. And ‘Granite Guy’ is going to help me tile and install baseboards. I also want to buy some non-slip stickers for the stairs. Also, I am having some new bedroom furniture delivered next week – meaning that I need to actually clean my room while I am tiling, instead of just relocating all the crap.

My sleeping habits are not improving – most likely because I have not been taking my pills (as I don’t want to oversleep on work mornings). I miss Ephedra and all of the energy it used to bring me. Damn those people who abused it and got it taken off the market by the FDA. I went into a nutrition store the other day, in hopes of finding something similar to the energy level ephedra used to bring me. Here is the scenario:

I walk into the store, and there are two male sales people and one out of shape, gentleman in his mid-forties talking to both salesmen. Note that one of the salesmen was pretty tall, with arms the size of my thighs. He looked like he could have thrown on a football uniform and taken the field. The other salesman (if we can call him a “man”) was in his early twenties, pretty, and physically fit. He could just as easily have been working at Hollister or Abercrombie. Regardless – he left the other customer to approach me. Seriously, do I look like I will fall for any pretty 24 year old out there? Bloody Hell!

He asks me what he can do for me. . . I want to tell him he can leave me alone so I can peruse in peace – instead, I told him, I want whatever combination of pills will give me the energy ephedra did. I explain I take prescription sleeping pills at night, so I need ‘vitamins’ which will not counteract the sleeping pills, and also will not give me an energy crash when it wears off. He assured me that nothing they sell would interfere with my sleeping pills. Apparently he is a doctor and a psychic because he didn’t even ask what I was taking! He then led me to a small bottle of something which cost 66.00. I asked if they sold sample sizes – They Don’t! ‘Dr. Dealer’, as he will now be called, went on to explain that I would need to combine this metabolizing fat-burner energy herbal supplement with ephedrine (which luckily for me, they also sell). Ephedrine is a synthetic version of ephedra that people use to breathe easier (think asthmatics and people suffering from colds). When I asked what a box of ephedrine costs, he smiled and said, “$39.00”.


(Jesus had not actually appeared. I said His name because I figured he was going to bless the ‘supplements’ for me, based on the prices I choked out a laugh and told “Dr. Dealer” that I did not want to spend that much on non-refundable products that may not work. He assured me that if this particular combination didn’t work, he would be able to come up with something that would. How scientific! I asked if he could provide a few samples for me to test the combo first. Not only did he say, ‘No” but he went on to explain that the price was fair based on supply and demand. Ha ha ha ha I don’t think he has actually taken an economics course. And I sure as hell didn’t see Adam Smith’s “Wealth of Nations” anywhere in the store. He handed me a form and indicated I needed to fill it out for their customer database and he would give me a 20% discount on the metabolizer; but that the ephedrine was just selling too well to discount. That explains why they had 100+ boxes on the counter behind the registers.

I decided that I needed a second opinion and decided to call NBF, as he is a supplement genius. I reached for my phone, which was no where in my purse. Having left it in the car, I saw no choice but to tell ‘Dr. Dealer’ that I’d be back after I made a phone call. The thing is. . . I never went back. I thought the guy was a douche and the store was run by ‘charlatans’.

The end result is that I am still exhausted and searching for the ultimate energy source. If anyone is leaving the country and happens to find some ephedra – please bring me back some. It is not illegal to possess it in the US, just illegal to SELL it.

Desperately Seeking Ephedra, Out!

PERSONAL NOTE: Have fun in New York!!!

06 July 2009

Satisfaction Guaranteed or Your Money Back

Current mood: reflective

I can’t sit back and wonder why
It took so long for this to die and I hate it when you fake it
You can’t hide it; you might as well embrace it
So believe me it’s not easy; it seems that something’s telling me
I’m in too deep, and I’, trying to keep
Up above in my head, instead of going under
~ “In Too Deep” by Sum 41

Marcus Aurelius acquired some bling this weekend! He now proudly displays tinted windows and vanity license plates!

I spoil the car as if it were a child – I realize this. Some people go out and buy those fake babies that look real, then carry them around and show them off, pretending that they are real. I don’t do that. So, chalk one point up for my sanity!

My sister and I are heading back to ‘Sin City’ in September. We made our reservations today! 4 days/3 nights in Las Vegas!! This time we are staying “off the strip” for a different experience! Not that anyone knew our last experience – as what happens in Vegas stays there. Still – we will have a new set of rules and a new set of adventures in which to partake!

This weekend I began a new home improvement project. I am tiling the floor of my bedroom. It actually is looking fairly good, considering it is my first solo-tiling experience. Once the floor is finished, I get to go purchase new baseboards. I am actually looking forward to picking those up and painting them! I will be leaving the install to a friend who I know is ultra-excited to install them! I know he is excited because when I asked him, via text, if he wanted to install the baseboards, his response was an enthusiastic: “I can”. I know that’s sometimes emotion gets lost in text messages – but this time, I felt the excitement radiating from my phone.

I also have a new ceiling fan to install – but I am letting my dad do that part. No use giving all the fun to just one person. Let’s spread the wealth around! If you also want to be a part of this thrilling excitement, let me know. I am sure I can find a job. . . I mean, an “activity” for you!

Woo hoo!

PRIVATE NOTE: I miss you! Hope your date night went well this weekend!

CONFIDENTIAL NOTE: We need a good idea!

01 July 2009

Men Can Do Terrible Things – Yes They Can

Current mood: anxious

While you were sleeping,
I figured out everything:
I was constructed for you,
And you were molded for me.
Now I feel your name.
Coursin' through my veins.
You shine so bright, it's insane.
You put the sun to shame.
~ “Lullaby” by the Spill Canvas

Before I start blathering on like I tend to do, I wanted to thank “our mutual friend, Adam” for all he has done to contribute to my overall happiness. Adam, you are one Hell of a guy! Thank you!

Now that’s out of the way and I can start pouring my thoughts into your laps. I cannot play a musical instrument. I wish that I could – but I cannot. I played the coronet (cousin to the trumpet) when I was in elementary school. I was terrible. I am being kind when I say ‘terrible’. The noise that I generated via the coronet was NOT music. There was only one song I was ever able to play with any decency – and that one only contained 16 measures or so. It is also the only song I can play on the piano one handed (with the exception of London Bridge and Mary Had a Little Lamb). I wanted to learn to play the violin. I NEVER wanted to learn to play the trumpet. My mom persuaded me by telling me that my maternal grandmother played trumpet in a twin band/orchestra when she was younger. Yes, a band which consisted of only twins. Apparently none of my grandmother’s musical talent was passed genetically to me. I quit band after one year.

Recently, I heard that one of my brothers wants to learn to play the violin. He, too, played the trumpet when he was younger. He, too, was persuaded to do so through the manipulation of our mother who explained to him that grandma played trumpet in a twin band. . . plus, she had the added ammunition of ‘and your sister played it as well and LOVED it.’. LIES! LIES! LIES! My brother also quit band shortly after joining. It wasn’t until much later that we discovered that renting a trumpet was far cheaper than renting most other instruments.

Somehow, my sister, Kabie, was able to play the flute. I didn’t know that woodwinds were even an option. She dropped out of band to sing in choir – moving onto show choir in high school. Another sibling gives up on playing an instrument.

After dropping out of band, I switched to choir. I loved choir. Unfortunately, I have not been blessed with vocal talent either. My music instructors suffered through 4 years of me singing in their choir classes. I remember hearing comments like: “Um, well that wasn’t good.” and “You sure don’t sound anything like your cousin when you sing.” (note to readers: my cousin, like my sister, sings like an angel.) Due to these less-than-encouraging comments from my choir directors, I quit choir after my sophomore year in high school. I did not have the confidence to even attempt to sing in our church choir – as most of the church choir consisted of really talented singers.

To this day, I won’t sing karaoke (even if threatened with death). I won’t sing along with the congregation in church. I won’t even sing in the shower. I will, however, sing along to the radio in my car. I love to sing. And in my car, I don’t care what I sound like. I even sing in my car when other people are present. It’s my sacred singing place. I have found that cars don’t care what I sing or say in them.

In fact, when in high school, I used to curse in my car. My siblings would threaten to tattle on me for doing so. Their threats went unfulfilled – as I would require them to say a curse word any time I drove them anywhere as a form of reverse blackmail. It worked. And I can proudly say that none of my siblings, to my knowledge, have a problem saying the word ‘Fuck’ while driving! I was such a good, influential older sister.

Let’s go to Vegas soon!

If you haven’t donated to my Breast Cancer 3-Day Team yet, please do so! We are still short a few thousand dollars – all of which must be raised by August 7th, or we pay the difference. http://www.the3day.org/goto/jtuck

CONFIDENTIAL NOTE: My apologies for what may have been a very awkward situation.

Eidetic Vision

Main Entry: ei·det·ic Pronunciation: I-'det-ik Function: adjective : marked by or involving extraordinarily accurate and vivid recall especially of visual images - an eidetic memory Merriam-Webster's Dictionary, © 2002 Merriam-Webster, Inc.